How to Invent a Soup

Post by Sharon

I LOVE soup and especially because it can be made from elements in your pantry, freezer or fridge, and leftovers can make great soups components! I'm going to share what I've learned over the decades of soup making - 

Soup making is all about components. Let's look at some ingredients that can be used - 

THICKENING: Flour, cornstarch, rice, cream, cheese, potatoes. 

BROTH:  Sherry, beer, broth, stock, water.

NEUTRAL VEGGIES: Green beans, corn, peas, 

BITTER VEGGIES: Kale, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, arugula, endive.

AROMATIC VEGGIES: Carrots, onions, celery, garlic, 

SPICY/HOT: Peppers, bell peppers, ginger root, horseradish, red pepper flakes, cayenne, wasabi.

BEANS/LEGUMES: Lentils, kidney beans, pinto beans, northern beans, black beans.

STARCHES:  Gnocchi, pasta, rice, potatoes, yams.

LEFTOVERS: Baked chicken, hamburger, roast beef. 

MEATS: Beef, ground beef, meatballs, sausage, roasted chicken, Buffalo chicken, pulled pork, seafood (tofu for vegetarians), bacon, ham.

FATS: Coconut oil, olive oil, butter, Canola oil, peanut oil, sesame oil. 

SEASONING: Salt, ground pepper, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning, marjoram, thyme, parsley, cumin, basil, rosemary, bay leaf, cayenne pepper, Worcestershire, soy sauce, ginger powder, Dijon, Tabasco, balsamic vinegar, liquid smoke, truffle oil.

Whether you use a slow-cooker and simmer all day or simmer on the stove, soups seem to get more flavor the longer they are cooked.


If you are a cooked from scratch kind of person and like to monitor what goes into your diet, then a dream kitchen conversion might go something like this - remove upper cabinets for more space and less claustrophobia and keep canisters of components at the ready - 

Items you might find in my containers - 

BAKING: Cornmeal, masa harana, flour, rye flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, powdered sugar, cocoa.

STARCHES: Spaghetti noodles, rigatoni, elbow macaroni, brown rice, white rice, wild rice.

BEANS/LEGUMES: Lentils, black beans, garbanzo beans, pinto beans, white beans, kidney beans.

SNACKS: Crackers, granola, dried fruit, nuts, seeds.

Creative cooking is the result of creative shopping and storage. With a bit of planning, in a pinch you can make a very fast meal if you keep your pantry well stored.